7 Things You Probably Didn’t Know About Orgasms

7 Things You Probably Didn’t Know About Orgasms

The science of orgasm is a fascinating subject. In this post, we’ll take a look at seven of the most interesting things scientists have discovered about orgasms. What to learn more? Check out this video for even more orgasm facts.   

1.) The faces people make when they have an orgasm look different across cultures. Researchers have found that the Western orgasm face includes eyes that are opened wider and a vertically stretched mouth, while the East Asian orgasm face includes more smiling, with a raised brow and closed eyes. 

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Video: The Science of Being Transgender

Video: The Science of Being Transgender

Most people are cisgender, meaning that their gender identity corresponds with their birth sex; however, some people are transgender, meaning their gender identity and birth sex are different. Increasingly, scientists have been working to help us understand what accounts for this gender variability, and research suggests that the answers may have to do with both genetics and the brain. 

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What Actually Happens to Your Brain and Body During Sex? (Video)

What Actually Happens to Your Brain and Body During Sex? (Video)

Why does sex tend to feel good? In order to answer this question, we need to step back and look at what our brains and bodies are doing during sexual activity. In the video below, our friends over at ASAP Science provide a handy summary of the changes that occur. 

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Can Food Put Us In The Mood? How Hunger State Influences Responses to Romantic Imagery

Can Food Put Us In The Mood? How Hunger State Influences Responses to Romantic Imagery

Food and romance are intimately intertwined in modern dating rituals. Indeed, restaurants are one of the most popular places people visit when they go on a date. Neuroscience research suggests that there might be a very good reason for this: having a full stomach just might make our brains more sensitive to romantic cues.

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More Evidence That Sex Could Be Good For Your Brain

More Evidence That Sex Could Be Good For Your Brain

Research on both humans and animals increasingly suggests that being sexually active just might benefit the brain. Here's an overview of the evidence that has accumulated so far:

  • A 2010 study on male rats discovered a link between sexual activity and neuron growth [1]. Specifically, rats that were allowed to have sex daily over a two-week period demonstrated more neuron growth than rats that were only allowed to have sex once during that time.

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Video: Is There a Sex Difference in Intelligence?

Video: Is There a Sex Difference in Intelligence?

The question of whether men and women differ when it comes to intelligence has long been a subject of scientific debate. For instance, some researchers have argued that men have superior intellect because their brains, on average, tend to be larger compared to women. Others, however, have argued that brain size in and of itself is a relatively meaningless metric to consider, especially in light of the fact that numerous animal species have larger brains than humans, but aren’t necessarily smarter than we are.

For a brief overview of what the research in this area has found, check out the video below from our friends over at ASAP Science.

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What I Learned About BDSM at a Sex Research Conference

What I Learned About BDSM at a Sex Research Conference

Earlier this month, the fourth annual Sexuality Pre-Conference was held just prior to the meeting of the Society for Personality and Social Psychology (SPSP). Together with a few of my colleagues, I have been helping to co-organize this pre-conference for the last four years with the goal of making sure that sexuality research is consistently well represented at SPSP.

I truly believe that this year’s program was our best yet and wanted to take a few moments to share some of the key insights and takeaways from this event in case you missed it (and also to entice you to attend next year!). Specifically, I want to tell you a bit about our very first presentation of the day, which focused on the science of BDSM. (Do we know how to get people’s attention at 8:00 AM or what?)

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Scientists Find More Evidence That Sex Might Be Good For Your Brain

Scientists Find More Evidence That Sex Might Be Good For Your Brain

A growing body of research suggests that frequent sexual activity has brain benefits. For instance, a 2010 study on male rats discovered a link between sexual activity and neuron growth [1]. Specifically, rats that were allowed to have sex daily over a two-week period demonstrated more neuron growth than rats that were only allowed to have sex once during that time. Likewise, a 2013 study—which also focused on male rats—found that daily sexual activity was linked not only to generation of more new neurons, but also to enhanced cognitive functioning [2].

Clearly, sex seems to be good for the brains of rats—but what about humans? A new study published in the Archives of Sexual Behavior suggests that sex may very well be good our brains, too [3].

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6 Reasons to be Thankful for Sex Today

6 Reasons to be Thankful for Sex Today

For those of you celebrating Thanksgiving today, one of the many things you might consider giving thanks for is sex. Why? Here are six good reasons, all supported by science.

1. Sex is a multi-purpose activity that allows us to meet a wide range of needs. In fact, scientists have identified at least 237 distinct reasons for having sex! Not only is sex a fun and pleasurable way to pass the time, but it's also a potential way to reproduce, to demonstrate love and affection, and to find relief (indeed, research suggests that having sex can potentially relieve stress for couples). In other words, sex can do a lot for us.

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Sexual Curiosities: People Who Sneeze Every Time They Orgasm

Sexual Curiosities: People Who Sneeze Every Time They Orgasm

Scientists and physicians have documented a number of fascinating sexual curiosities over the years, such as people who experience orgasms originating in their feet and men who are allergic to their own semen. One of the more interesting ones I’ve ever come across is a phenomenon known as sexually-induced sneezing, which is exactly what it sounds like. Here's what we know about it.

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Video: What Happens in the Brain During an Orgasm?

Video: What Happens in the Brain During an Orgasm?

What goes on inside the brain during sexual arousal and orgasm? And are there any neurological differences between men and women in this regard? In the Big Think video below, Dr. Barry Komisaruk sheds some light on the answers and discusses some of the other fascinating questions he has studied in his lab at Rutgers University, including whether it's really possible to think yourself to orgasm (at least for women, it certainly is!). Dr. Komisaruk is one of the world's leading experts on the neuroscience of orgasm and has written some fascinating books on the topic, including The Science of Orgasm and The Orgasm Answer Guide. Check them out to learn more.

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Why We Should Stop Calling Porn “Addiction” An Addiction

Why We Should Stop Calling Porn “Addiction” An Addiction

The concept of “pornography addiction” is one that has generated a lot of debate in the popular media. Although pretty much everyone seems to agree that there are indeed some people out there who are distressed about their porn use, there has been much controversy about whether it is appropriate to apply the “addiction” label in such cases. A new study published in Biological Psychology provides provocative evidence in favor of dropping the addiction label because what’s going on inside the brains of so-called porn “addicts” is nothing like what you would expect from someone who has an addiction.

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Video: Why We Love, Why We Cheat

Video: Why We Love, Why We Cheat

In this fascinating TED talk, anthropologist Helen Fisher describes the evolution of love, the neurochemical foundation behind it, and the essential role in plays in our lives. She also talks about how use of antidepressants affects our brain chemistry and the potentially disastrous implications this might have for our love lives. After you watch the video below, click here to learn more about the neurochemistry of love.

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5 Fantastic Videos On The Science Of Love and Attraction

5 Fantastic Videos On The Science Of Love and Attraction

For your viewing (and learning) pleasure this Valentine's Day weekend, I've put together a playlist of five of my favorite videos on the science of love and attraction. These videos span a range of topics, including what actually goes on inside our brains when we experience love and heartbreak, why we become attracted to certain people, what you can do to improve your own relationship, and much more. Enjoy!

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11 Scientific Facts About The Female Orgasm

11 Scientific Facts About The Female Orgasm

How much do you know about the female orgasm? Check out the list below for 11 of the most interesting facts scientists have discovered about women and their orgasms. Which one is your favorite?

1. The rule of thumb: the distance between a woman’s clitoris and her vaginal opening is associated with her likelihood of orgasm during vaginal intercourse. The smaller the distance (particularly if it's a thumb-width or less), the more likely she is to reach orgasm. Why? The clitoris receives more indirect stimulation when it’s closer to the action.

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The Brain In Love (VIDEO)

The Brain In Love (VIDEO)

In this fascinating TED talk, Dr. Helen Fisher explores what happens inside the brain when we experience romantic love. To that end, Fisher describes a series of studies she conducted in which people were put in MRI machines and shown images of their loved ones. The incredible results help to explain why romantic love is such an intense and consuming state, why some couples are able to maintain passion longer than others, and why breakups can be so devastating. Fisher also explores the similarities between romantic love and addiction (for instance, you see tolerance, withdrawal, and relapse in both cases), and even considers parallels to romantic love in the animal kingdom. Check out the full video below for more on the neurochemistry behind love.

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Some People’s Brains May Be “Wired” To Seek More Sex

Some People’s Brains May Be “Wired” To Seek More Sex

Whenever you survey people about how many sexual partners they have had in their lifetime, you undoubtedly find a lot of variability. Some people report one or two partners ever, while others report hundreds or perhaps thousands. How do we account for this incredible range in sexual history? A recent study published in Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience suggests that it may have something to do with how our brains are “wired” to respond to sexual stimuli.

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15 Scientific Facts About Orgasm

15 Scientific Facts About Orgasm

Think you know everything there is to know about the topic of orgasm? For today’s post, I’ve compiled a list of 15 of the most fun and interesting scientific facts about the big O. Do you have other favorite orgasm facts? Please share them below!

1. Multiple orgasms are real. In fact, it is thought that most women are capable or having more than one orgasm in a row. Men can have multiple orgasms too, but this ability is rare and, among men who have it, it doesn’t seem to be quite as strong as it is for women. Consider this: the most orgasms documented in one hour is 134 for women and *just* 16 for men [1].

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Fact Check: Can Spraying Yourself With Oxytocin Help You Get Laid?

Fact Check: Can Spraying Yourself With Oxytocin Help You Get Laid?

The hormone oxytocin is often referred to in the popular media as the “love hormone” or “cuddle drug” because research has shown that it plays an important role in human bonding. For instance, experimental studies have demonstrated that participants are more trusting of other people during social interactions after being given a nasal spray with oxytocin compared to a placebo [1]. In an attempt to capitalize on this and other such discoveries, several companies have started selling oxytocin-based products that are advertised to have a wide range of applications, from giving you an edge in the world of business to having more or better sex. The basic premise is that if you can enhance oxytocin levels in the people around you, they will develop more trust in you, thereby allowing you to get what you want sexually or otherwise. But do these products really work as promised?

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Does The Size Of A Man’s Testicles Say Anything About His Parenting?

Does The Size Of A Man’s Testicles Say Anything About His Parenting?

A new study looking at the link between men’s testicular size and their parenting qualities has been making the rounds in the media lately, with provocative headlines ranging from “Choose Dads with Smaller ‘Nads” to “Dudes with Smaller Balls are Better Parents” to “Big Testicles Indicate Rubbish Dads.” The message is pretty clear: if you’re looking for a baby daddy who’s going to stick around and take care of your kids, look for the guy with the smallest testicles you can find. However, before you go and dig out the measuring tape, it's worth taking a closer look at the details of this study.

 
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